The following guidelines are important to consider during patient engagement and education products:

  1. Identify the learner (patient population demographics)
  2. Provide patients with simply, easy to read material
  3. Verbal, personal patient instruction videos might be an opportunity.

During research for patient engagement and patient education apps, the author discovered plenty of apps that educate patients to a very specific disease state. For example, iHearttouch is an app that can educate patients with regards to their heart conditions.3  Apps such as Modality Body provide MDs with precise anatomy of the human body that they can use to educate their patients about a disease.4 However, as per my general observations, many of these apps are too technical and may not be very useful in conveying the message to the patient.

An average American can read and write at an eighth grade level. Adding complicated medical lingo to discharge instructions has risk of confusing patients and defeats the purpose of patient education. Secondly, it is not clear how many individuals will actually use such healthcare apps for medical education. As per a paper by IMS, 5 the downloading and the usage of healthcare apps is low with “50% of healthcare apps receiving less than 500 downloads”.5 Thirdly, most of the current consumers of healthcare are elderly individuals (65+) who are not necessarily technology savvy.  Usage of apps among such patient population is very minimal5 as they tend to rely on face to face interaction for health information. Hence, an App that can integrate verbal communication by the physician and uses simple language to convey health information will most likely be successful.

Listed below are two companies that are trying to make a contribution to the patient engagement market space.

Axial Exchange:

As per its website, “Axial comprehensive patient engagement solution includes Mayo Clinic health content, software tools for tracking vitals, labs, and symptoms, and integration with wearable devices such as Fitbit”.1

With an axial app, a patient can get their hospital visit organized ( the app can provide the patient with the MD’s contact number as well as the date and the time of appointment), improve patient’s health literacy ( provide patient with educational material pertaining to their possible disease state),  arrange patient’s medication list ( provide patient with a list of their medication as well as instructions on how to take them and when to take them), scheduled post discharge appointment as well as manage patient’s progress.1

The app also provides health systems with web-based dashboard that provides insight into how patients are engaging utilizing their education or following their appointments. The app also provides personalize communication ( for example a patient with untreated HTN will get personalize message stating “Here are some tips to control your HTN”).

 

WELVU

WeLVU is a cloud based patient engagement technology platform which aims to improve patient satisfaction and outcome. WeLVU mobile, provides ipad and iphone based platforms that combine medical illustration, a providers verbal conversation with the patient to create a patient specific engagement video.2 By providing patient specific videos and illustration, the chances of enhancing patient engagement is increased.

 

 

Source:

 

1: http://axialexchange.com/howto/

2: http://www.welvu.com/mobile/

3: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/iheart-touch/id534675711?mt=8

4: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/modalitybody-interactive-anatomy/id364370895?mt=8

5:http://www.imshealth.com/deployedfiles/imshealth/Global/Content/Corporate/IMS%20Health%20Institute/Reports/Patient_Apps/IIHI_Patient_Apps_Report.pdf

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *